Tag Archives: the movies

Girl Talk: How I Learned About Feminism And Motherhood From Molly Weasley

I was eight years old when I first picked up Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone at an elementary school book fair. My mom bought me a hardcover copy to take home and read at my leisure. Instead of tuning into the Disney Channel I devoured all 309 pages of Harry’s first adventure in one night. As time passed, I continued to keep up with Harry Potter. I read all seven books upon their immediate release. I went to midnight showings of each film, sitting alongside my fellow Harry Potter Heads with their broomsticks and faux-lightning scars. I even visited The Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Theme Park in Orlando, Florida, this past January, courtesy of the best Christmas gift ever. Both the 90-minute line to get into Ollivander’s Wand Shop and the hour-long wait for a meal at The Three Broomsticks were well worth it.

I’m sad that my childhood journey with Harry will come to an end on July 15—fourteen years after my initial HP experience—with the opening of “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2.” Some kids read the Harry Potter books and learned about Azkaban, love potions, and chocolate frogs. I learned about feminism and motherhood, thanks to one of the series’ most underrated characters:

Molly’s character is viewed the same way most view the role of mothering: she is under appreciated and not acknowledged enough in comparison to her true significance and what she accomplishes on a daily basis.

Molly is the mother of Ron, Harry’s best friend at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, as well as six other Weasley children. Her husband, Arthur, works at the Ministry of Magic and leaves her as the designated homemaker. Her character is short and plump, with flaming red locks that match the rest of the Weasley clan. She rules the roost and wears many different hats—caregiver and expert pie maker, activist and one of the only female members of the Order of the Phoenix, and participating fighter in the Second Wizarding War to name a few. In “Deathly Hallows,” Molly will go toe-to-toe with Bellatrix Lestrange, chief Death Eater and Lord Voldemort’s right-hand-woman, during the Battle of Hogwarts. In case you haven’t read the books, she plays a pivotal role.

Molly’s character is viewed the same way most view the role of mothering: she is under appreciated and not acknowledged enough in comparison to her true significance and what she accomplishes on a daily basis.

She welcomes other children into her family and treats them like her own. Despite her lack of financial resources, she always comes up with a decent Christmas feast for all guests invited. While Molly upholds the traditional stereotype of being a stay-at-home mom, she is a new kind of mom that’s revolutionary in children’s stories. She is not a submissive character by any means; instead, she uses her role as “mother of many” as a means of power and accomplishing great tasks.

Molly Weasley’s unique, badass mothering reminds me of my own mom. Their similarities struck me at a young age through basic, minor details; specifically when Molly sent a Christmas package to Harry Potter during their first year at Hogwarts because she knew he was an orphan and wouldn’t get many presents. My mom always buys my friends her own Christmas presents, too, I thought to myself.

On a more serious note—Molly’s ability to aggressively stare down any problem facing her family, no matter what the cost or sacrifice, confirmed my suspicions that she shared more than a few characteristics with my own mom.

Like Molly Weasley, my mom stayed at home, but redefined the traditional role in her own ways. She’s never failed to encourage my progressive thoughts, urging me to pursue my most radical opinions over a cup of Lipton tea and piece of homemade bread pudding. My mom raised my siblings and I to never assume just because she stays home with us all day, she’s responsible for doing the dishes after dinner—my brother, sister, and I are very familiar with a sponge and dishwasher detergent.

It was a form of magic to see the same qualities play out between this made-up mother character in my favorite books and my real mom. My views on modern motherhood were inherently affected by witnessing both mothers nurture all children who need them, not just their own blood; manage to hold their families together under any and all circumstances; have unconditional love and support, even in the most frustrating moments; and partake in empowering, female-friendly movements that positively influence their daughters and sons alike.

J.K. Rowling didn’t only provide a source of entertainment for readers through Harry Potter; her works of fiction serve as critical tools in shaping the ways in which we perceive real-life experiences. Underneath the Death Eaters and Floo Powder are characters, themes, and metaphors filled with a deeper understanding. The Wizarding World might be a whole world away from reality, but its underlying messages hold true. I’m just so grateful that my mom bought me my first Harry Potter hardcover at that book fair. My feminist consciousness wouldn’t have been the same without it.

No, Roseanne Barr Doesn’t Want To Go To The Movies With You

“I hate movies. I hate the whole f**king movie business. I hate everything involved with movies. Producers. Moviemakers. Those people are freaking nuts and criminals. I can’t take it. They’re not like the rest of humanity. I’d rather hang out with plumbers. They’re so self-important. And everything they do is bulls**t. Excuse me, but movies are bulls**t. They’re tidy little f**king bulls**t stories. They all have a rape thing in them. They’re all anti-woman. They’re all f**king bullshit. There isn’t one of ‘em that speaks to me or says anything decent. Somebody could go in with the best f**king script, like, ‘Grapes of Wrath,’ and they’d come out and it’d star Kevin James. Nothing can happen good in movies and it never does … I didn’t like being in movies. You have to sit there 19 hours in a trailer. Which is why I got into show business—to get out of a f**king trailer. I’m sitting in a trailer and 19 hours later, they come down and they turned on a light. So you go down and stand there and then you go back and wait 19 more hours. And then you go and say your line 75 times in a row. It’s boring to me. I liked that movie ‘V [for Vendetta].’

Roseanne Barr tells The Daily Beast how she really feels about the movie industry. I guess you you shouldn’t invite her to movie night, unless you happen to be screening the one she thinks is acceptable. Sure, she may be a bit of a sourpuss but I love that Roseanne can go on this kind of rant simply by being asked, “Did you see ‘Knocked Up’?” [The Daily Beast] Keep reading »

Casting Couch: Ashton Kutcher, Ryan Reynolds Coulda Been In “Horrible Bosses”

Over the weekend, “Horrible Bosses” grossed $28 million at the box office. But according to an interview Brett Ratner did with The Hollywood Reporter, in the six years the movie was in development, it could have had a very, very different cast. Ratner explained that many actors had once been attached to take Charlie Day, Jason Bateman, and Jason Sudeikis’ roles—including Ashton Kutcher, Ryan Reynolds, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Johnny Knoxville, and then Ashton Kutcher again. Keep reading »

Have A Movie Night With “Miral”

Artist Julian Schnabel—the dude behind both “Before Night Falls” and “The Diving Bell and the Butterfly”—is one of my favorite directors for making beautiful, tough, touching stories with artistic flare. His newest one, “Miral,” didn’t make a huge splash at the box office, but is very worthy of a viewing and it’s out out on DVD today. In it, Freida Pinto plays Miral, a Palestinian girl who is brought up in an safe house in Jerusalam and, as she ventures outside at age 17, finds herself drawn toward intifada.

[$19.99 Amazon]

Culturista: Your Guide To The Week, From “Harry Potter” To The Pitchfork Music Festival

People, welcome to mid-July. How did we get here so fast? I have no freaking idea. Luckily, this week is going to be action-packed on the popular culture front. From the midnight release of “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2,” to the season premiere of “Breaking Bad,” to James Franco releasing his first album, find this week’s highlights after the jump. Keep reading »

Justin Timberlake’s Mom Caught Him Having Sex Once, Won’t Be Pleased With His New Flick

“I was caught [having sex] one time. My mom wasn’t cool about it. I was too young to be in bed with a girl, so she was upset.”

Justin Timberlake divulges in the new issue of Elle that he once got caught in the act by his mom. This has led many to speculate on when this happened and which girl he was doing the deed with. Was it Britney Spears? Or was it Fergie, who he dated when he was 16? I’m guessing the latter, as he says in the quote he was “too young.” Also, Fergie was 23 at the time. Scandal! [People, NY Post]

After the jump, Justin reveals that he still worries about his mom seeing too much. Keep reading »

Shun, Shag, Or Marry: The Men Of “Horrible Bosses”

Over the past few weeks, Jennifer Aniston has (unwittingly, I think) hogged the “Horrible Bosses” publicity spotlight. Almost all of the coverage of the movie has focused on her—how she may or may not have a topless scene in the movie, how she’s breaking out of America’s Sweetheart mode to play a sex-crazed dentist, how she blew a kiss to Justin Theroux while getting her star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Enough with Jennifer. I think it’s high time we took a better look at the three male stars of “Horrible Bosses.” After the jump, who we would shun, shag, and marry.
Keep reading »

Tom Felton Would Love To Play Villains For Life

“People say Draco is sexier than Harry. Harry is just a nice guy, surrounded by so many strong characters, whereas Draco stands out on his own. And there’s something about the way the Malfoys look. I wouldn’t be worried about playing a bad guy for the rest of my life … Let’s be honest. We weren’t picked for ‘Harry Potter’ for our acting ability — it was because we looked like the characters as they’d been written. We started out as rank amateurs, and we’ll be lucky if we’ve learned something over the past 10 years.”

—Tom Felton, aka Draco Malfoy of “Harry Potter,” talks to the Daily Mail about the character that made him famous and his hopes now that the mega-popular series is coming to an end. Last week, Emma Watson revealed that Tom was her first crush and now I’m kind of getting why. I like that he tells it like it is. Plus, when the newspaper asked about his final showdown with Daniel Radcliffe in “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2,” he said, ‘‘I wanted them to run together in slow motion and hug.” Hilarious. [Daily Mail] Keep reading »

The Good, The Bad & The WTF At The “Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows Part II” Premiere

Emma Watson
It’s been a long time coming for you Harry Potter fanatics — the final film is finally here and Potter is all grown up. At this week’s London premiere of “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part II,” the final film in the series, the stars (and strange Brits) were out in droves. Emma Watson looked ravishing, as usual, but how did everyone else fare? Check out the best and worst looks after the jump.

Hayley Atwell Enjoyed Manhandling Chris Evans’ “Man Boobs”

“When Chris Evans first took his shirt off on the set of ‘Captain America,’ I just instinctively grabbed his man boob. They kept it in the film. So we did a couple of takes of me being really inappropriate with my hand on his pec for the duration of the scene.”

—Hayley Atwell, Chris Evans‘ co-star in “Captain America” reveals to Esquire all sorts of interesting details, like that her dad is a shaman and that she thought her dog was dying when it got its first period. I particularly like this quote, even though it’s perhaps a misuse of the word “man boob.” I think that’s called “muscle.” [Esquire]

After the jump, Hayley’s explanation of why it’s hilarious she’s now considered a hot girl. Keep reading »

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